From Brentham to Wimbledon
Fred Perry was the son of a cotton spinner, who went on to become world table tennis champion at 19, before switching to lawn tennis and winning Wimbledon three times with a killer forehand.
He honed his self-taught shots at his local public courts in west London, going on to be a successful Davis Cup captain, winner of 10 majors and the first player to win a Career Grand Slam - Fred remains the only British player ever to achieve this. Yet still, his success was always unexpected, and despite his unprecedented contribution to British tennis, Fred was not accepted by tennis authorities until later in life due to contrasting sharply with the privileged background of most players associated with the sport in England. In 1984, a statue of Fred was unveiled at Wimbledon – a permanent tribute to the champion.
The Fred Perry Championship is due to take place on the 7th and 8th September with boys and girls categories in the under 12s, under 14s, under 16s and under 18s. The tournament will take place at The Brentham Club, as well as next door at Pitshanger Park, which is part of the Will to Win Organisation.
Set up as a tennis company 20 years ago, Will to Win started off with a motto: ‘Tennis for All.’ Their aim was to improve the sports facilities in public parks and enable year-round play for all ages, abilities and backgrounds. No restrictions, no expensive tennis club fees, just accessible courts for everyone. Will to Win now offers kids free use of the courts at select times throughout the week, and their not-for-profit charity, the Will to Win Foundation provides grants to schools, communities and individuals.
To find out more about Will to Win, visit their website here.